A guide to promoting your sales reps: Part 2

Communicating with sales reps when considering promoting them to management positions is crucial

By Sathee Brent,

Salespeople who demonstrate strong skills, achieve quotas and meet the needs of their current position may be the perfect candidate for a promotion. However, it is important that a business also discusses this option with an eligible sales rep and together they decide whether a promotion is best for everyone involved. 

Know whether you can lose him or her as a sales rep
Sales Readiness Group noted a business should contemplate whether it can afford to lose the sales the candidate brings in regularly. Identifying how much more he or she is producing than the average sales rep and knowing how you can replace the loss of sales revenue is an important consideration. 

Additionally, a business should consider the time it will take to ramp up other sales reps to compensate for the loss of a successful sales employee and the training process for the new management position. The expenses associated with promoting an individual to a new position should not be disregarded by an organization. This is a critical component to making the best decision regarding the promotion of a sales rep to a management position. Tracking the performance of employees can help an operation know what changes should be made if an individual is promoted. 

Sales incentive compensation management software can help an operation track the performance of various employees. This can be especially helpful when deciding whether a business can afford to promote a sales rep. 

While knowing the performance of the candidate as a salesperson, it is also important to consider the contributions he or she could make in a management position. This should be factored in when deciding whether a business can afford this transition. 

Discuss options with the candidate and know his or her opinion 
Offering upward mobility in the company is a great way to encourage sales reps. An operation should communicate the opportunities available to become involved in sales management. Additionally, letting the team know all considerations a business must make before promoting a candidate is very important. Each employee should know the skills required, what determines an eligible individual and how an operation determines the affordability of a promotion. 

If a candidate has been selected and all criteria is met, it is crucial for a business to discuss a promotion with the sales rep and know whether he or she is interested in a new position. If he or she wants to move into management, that is wonderful. However, some individuals may prefer working more closely with sales directly. Having this discussion helps ensure a business makes the best decision for not only the operation, but more importantly the employees who promote the success of the company. 

Additionally, speaking with a candidate can bring to light other concerns. Inc. magazine noted turrning selling instincts into a teachable topic is a necessary component to a successful sales management team.  Someone a business believes is an ideal match may indicate they do not feel confident translating their skills to the position. 

A business must also know what a candidate needs to successfully fulfill the job description if he or she decides to take the new job. Assisting with the transition to the new position is crucial for success in all parties. Asking a candidate what resources or assistance is necessary is a good start to ensuring the conversion to a sales management position goes as smoothly as possible. 

A successful salesperson may be a great addition to your sales management team. Knowing how to identify a qualified candidate and how to assist with the transistion can help a business improve drastically. 

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Sathee Brent